Banners at Unist’ot’en camp
Earth First! Journal editor’s note: This letter was originally published as a comment on our re-post about the No KXL protests in Washington D.C. this week. While we fully support a diversity of tactics, ranging from petitions and lawsuits to civil disobedience and sabotage, the critique made in this letter has been actively suppressed in environmental movement coverage of the climate crisis for fear of causing “horizontal hostility.” We hope student and environmental NGO organizers will hear the loving pleas of “not enough” and take the constructive advice to “start listening to the people most affected and supporting their struggles.” For example, support is needed right now to resist pipeline expansion in Wet’suwet’en territory!
Mainstream environmental activism is often framed as an ethical imperative based on a bottom line determined by scientific discourse. An unfortunate effect is that this can pit environmental groups against the (often indigenous) communities most affected by environmental devastation. And yet around the world indigenous peoples are leading movements that view ecology as a result of the adoption of local practices long suppressed by colonialism.
Enbridge’s planned “rebuild” of the existing Line 3 pipeline does not require a permit from the US President
In its largest capital project in history, Enbridge plans to do what Transcanada so far can’t — ship more than half a million barrels of heavy oil across the U.S. border without President Barack Obama’s direct approval. Late Monday evening, Enbridge announced plans for its largest capital project in history— a $7 billion replacement of its Line 3 pipeline.
The existing Line 3 pipeline is part of Enbridge’s extensive Mainline system. The 34-inch pipe was installed in 1968 and currently carries light oil 1,660 km from Edmonton to Superior, Wis. .. By the time it goes into service in 2017, Line 3 will ship 760,000 barrels of oil across the border every day, nearly double what it currently moves. …
With its announcement, the Line 3 replacement joins three other large-scale expansion projects by Enbridge in varying stages of development or approval. … Should all four of these projects go ahead, they will collectively increase Enbridge’s daily shipping volume by approximately 1.5 million barrels per day, or the equivalent of nearly two Keystone XL pipelines. The Keystone XL pipeline is expected to transport 830,000 bpd.
Roughly 400 student activists were arrested Sunday after zip-tying themselves to the White House fence in what observers say was likely the biggest single day of civil disobedience throughout the Keystone XL “saga.”
“Far from exonerating the State Department of wrongdoing, the Inspector General report simply concludes that such dirty dealings are business as usual,” said 350.org Policy Director Jason Kowalski. “While allowing a member of the American Petroleum Institute to review a tar sands oil pipeline may technically be legal, it’s by no means responsible.”
A protester in Ukraine swings a metal chain during clashes – a taste of things to come? Photograph: Gleb Garanich/Reuters
From South America to South Asia, a new age of unrest is in full swing as industrial civilisation transitions to post-carbon reality
by Nafeez Ahmed / The Guardian
If anyone had hoped that the Arab Spring and Occupy protests a few years back were one-off episodes that would soon give way to more stability, they have another thing coming. The hope was that ongoing economic recovery would return to pre-crash levels of growth, alleviating the grievances fueling the fires of civil unrest, stoked by years of recession.
But this hasn’t happened. And it won’t.
Instead the post-2008 crash era, including 2013 and early 2014, has seen a persistence and proliferation of civil unrest on a scale that has never been seen before in human history. This month alone has seen riots kick-off in Venezuela, Bosnia, Ukraine, Iceland, and Thailand.
This is not a coincidence. The riots are of course rooted in common, regressive economic forces playing out across every continent of the planet – but those forces themselves are symptomatic of a deeper, protracted process of global system failure as we transition from the old industrial era of dirty fossil fuels, towards something else.
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Save Teztan Biny (Fish Lake)! Photo by Garth Lenz, www.garthlenz.com
From Intercontinental Cry:
Tsilhqot’in Territory, BC (February 27, 2014): Yesterday’s federal decision to reject the New Prosperity Gold-Copper mine proposal was welcomed by Tsilhqot’in Chiefs, AFN National Chief A-in-chut Shawn Atleo, Union of BC Indian Chiefs President, Grand Chief Stewart Phillip and First Nations everywhere.
They now call on this to be the end of a costly, pointless battle that has dragged on since at least 1995, when Taseko Mines Ltd. was first told by the federal Department of Fisheries and Oceans not to waste any further time or money pursuing this unacceptable project.
The threat of deep sea mining
via Earth First! Newswire:
Yesterday, the U.S. government released a final proposal to allow the use of controversial seismic airguns to look for oil and gas deposits deep below the ocean floor in an area twice the size of California, stretching from Delaware to Florida. According to the Department of the Interior (DOI), these dynamite-like blasts are expected to injure and possibly kill large numbers of dolphins and whales along the East Coast and disturb the necessary activities of millions more.
Stop the Uinta Express Pipeline Project!
In order to have standing to object to the decision that will be made, individuals and organizations must provide comments to the scoping process. The comment period closes March 17. Tell the Forest Service to STOP THE UINTA EXPRESS PIPELINE
from Utah Tar Sands Resistance
Tesoro wants to build a 135-mile insulated pipeline connecting the Uinta Basin with the Salt Lake City-area refineries. The pipeline would move up to 60,000 barrels of black and yellow waxy crude a day. Because of its high paraffin content, Uinta’s waxy crude must remain warm in transit; black wax crude heated to 95 degrees, and yellow wax to 115 degrees.
If this pipeline is approved, it will be one more piece of infrastructure the state of Utah wishes to push forward in order to create an energy colony in Eastern Utah, and continue turning the area into a sacrifice zone. Utah has nearly completed a two-lane highway to nowhere, seeks to build a nuclear power plant and oil refinery on the Green River, and set up further infrastructure for US Oil Sands, Enefit, Red Leaf, and other fossil fuel extraction companies.
According to a recent article in the Salt Lake Tribune: “[The pipeline] would also ease a transportation bottleneck that state officials say is holding back development on Utah’s busiest oil patch and costing the state’s economy billions.”
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Banners at Unist’ot’en camp
SAVE THE DATES: Location to be announced
Rising Tide is organizing a convergence weekend on April 4, 5 and 6th called: No Pipelines!: Action Training for Climate Justice. This weekend will be for mass movement trainings focused on building resistance across our different organizing spaces to fight extreme energy expansion and its numerous resulting oppressions across Turtle Island.
We would like to invite you/your collective/group/organization to this event so we can learn from one another and strengthen our resolve to stop the expansion of extreme energy, end the exploitation of human and natural resources and offer our support to communities on the front lines of the ecological crises.
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The Ivanpah Solar Thermal generating station in the Mojave Desert may lure birds from across half the continent into a death trap. Photo by Howard Ignatius.
From Earth Island Journal, via Earth First! Newswire:
Ivanpah installation a zone of death for tortoises, raptors
The world’s largest solar thermal power plant officially went online one week ago today, on February 13. At a ceremony in the Mojave Desert south of Las Vegas, with US Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz presiding, the Ivanpah Solar Electric Generating System formally joined California’s power grid.
The cleantech trade press trumpeted the milestone in glowing terms only rewritten corporate press releases can offer. One article went so far as to call it the “Hoover Dam of Solar,” though whether that is a good or bad thing depends on your view of river impoundment. Reaction to the opening from other quarters was decidedly nuanced. When it was proposed in 2007, Ivanpah was first lauded as the future of clean energy. Now, the project is rarely covered in the press without the epithet “controversial” attached, aside from those glowing reports in the tech press.
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From Earth First! Newswire:
A local Unitarian minister and three western Maryland residents were arrested just before noon today outside the Allegany County Courthouse in Cumberland for peacefully protesting Virginia-based Dominion Resources’ plan to build a liquefied natural gas export facility at Cove Point in southern Maryland. The protesters blocked the courthouse entrance to demand justice in the controversial federal handling of the massive $3.8 billion project, which would take nearly a billion cubic feet of gas per day from fracking wells across the Appalachian region, liquefy it on the Chesapeake Bay, and export it to Asia.
Activists lock their necks together at Florida Power and Light headquarters in protest of the company’s fossil fuel-fired power plant expansion plans, Feb 24, 2014
[On Feb 21], as a key state permit hearing began in downtown Baltimore, activists from every corner of Maryland and from across the Mid-Atlantic marched from a nearby plaza to the doorstep of the Public Service Commission to send one clear message to state leaders: “Stop Cove Point.” This controversial $3.8 billion project, proposed by Virginia-based Dominion Resources, would take gas from fracking wells across the Appalachian region, liquefy it along the Chesapeake Bay in southern Maryland, and export it to Asia.
Over 80 activists with Earth First! groups from across the country converged at the Florida Power and Light (FPL) Headquarters [on Feb 24]. Five protestors locked their necks together, disrupting business operations at the second largest energy company in the nation. Their primary concern is a proposal to construct a fossil fuel power plant in Hendry County, on the border of the Big Cypress Seminole Reservation.